Instagram has put its mark on the social platform scene doubly so after being acquired by Facebook. The social network is now pushing past 300 million active users. The number of photos being shared is astounding (well beyond 70 million each day).

Brands that have gotten on board with Instagram are being blown away by the level of engagement. It’s said that users of the platform engage with brands 400% more than Facebook and Twitter. Just think about that or a second; if that’s not enough information to get you interested in the platform then I don’t know what you have in mind to grow your affiliate business.

Instagram, though, does seem foreign to a lot of affiliate marketers because so many like to hide behind their website and campaigns (how often do you see people creating video and that’s been around for quite a bit of time?). Once you get settled into the platform (tip: just start using it and it’ll come naturally) you can start making smart moves for marketing your offers.

Here’s a quick look at some of the strategies you should be using on Instagram:

A. Partner with Influencers and Brand Ambassadors

On Instagram it’s all about the association so if you want to make the platform work in your favor you need to build meaningful relationships with industry/market influences and those brand ambassadors that not only have a decent following but are trustworthy, interesting, and have great engagement levels with their followers.

B. Do the Hashtag Thing

No, don’t go overboard how you see some people do it by having every word a hashtag. Try to be methodical with your use of hashtags so that it has a meaningful message and can be tied to your brand. Keep using the hashtag within your campaigns so people can follow along to the message. Also utilize trending hashtags when they’re appropriate so that your messages reach those discussions.

C. Funnel to Instagram

You probably already have a Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, and Pinterest account setup that has a decent following. Now it’s time to get those followers on board with your Instagram by sending out an announcement and a link to your profile. Make those early shares the best you can and keep that precedence throughout your usage of the platform. You won’t convert them all to following you on IG but even a healthy percentage can help you grow and expand your brand on the platform.

D. Triumph your Followers

People love when they gain recognition from a big brand because they are put in a position where they now feel part of an inner-circle. By calling out and sharing something one of your followers have done you’re not only giving them a surprise recognition but it will encourage others to go above and beyond in trying to gain your attention which will naturally lead to more engagement.

E. Get into Multi-Media

Start taking pictures and record videos for your followers. Give them an inside peak behind your business. Share tips and tricks once or twice a week. Hold contests where followers need to take certain action (such as singing a song or shouting your brand out in public) to get some special discount. Media will be shared faster than text-heavy updates so use it to your advantage.

Here is a huge list of other IG marketing tips I’d recommend you take a look at.

Over time your usage of Instagram will be like an everyday routine; it’ll be an ease to engage with users, find great shots to share, and plunk your offers when appropriate. Factor in all the opportunities and the sheer growth of the platform and you could be in for one wild ride. No more putting it off – start using Instagram, now, and reap those rewards ($$$).


Image by LoboStudioHamburg